Everyone wins, and then we “grow up.”

Via Clare Polencheck
on Mar 16, 2011
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After reading Scott Robinson’s musings on his daughter’s butterflies, I felt moved to re-visit this story about my nephew that symbolized for me slight sadness, but as Scott suggested in his eloquent piece, a reminder and invitation to step back and see with innocent eyes in order to “reunite with God on an adult level.” 

At my sister’s birthday party last year, my nephew Mason, Eva (sister), and “Nama” were playing “Red Light, Green Light.”  When the time came for Mason’s turn as caller he declared everyone a winner.  We all laughed, and someone snorted and said, “How politically correct.” 

And it made me a little sad.  Not for the comment or any personal feelings about “political corrected-ness,” but for the illustration of loss of innocence.  At the tender age of 4, Mason had no idea what it meant to be “politically correct.”  He just wanted everyone to be happy, loved, and peaceful.  He hadn’t yet been twisted with the wrench of negative competitiveness that our world seems to function in today.   

Mason carries a rainbow umbrella and associates it only with rain and colors.  He picks the pink game piece as often as he picks the blue one.  He loves bluegrass, hip hop, country, and “cwassical” music.  He has no prejudice or narrow mindedness toward symbols or colors or styles.  Who teaches a kid that pink is for girls, blue for boys?  This is likely not an innate quality.  Ask Mason what is favorite color is, and his reply is, “All!”  He is inclusive because he hasn’t been painted by the prejudices and attachments we have as adults, maybe some learned from a very young age. 

Oh, protect the purity!  If we could all think, no, BE like children…can we come down off our “adult” pedestals and learn from our little ones?

“At about the same time, the disciples came to Jesus asking, “Who gets the highest rank in God’s kingdom?”

For an answer Jesus called over a child, whom he stood in the middle of the room, and said, “I’m telling you, once and for all, that unless you return to square one and start over like children, you’re not even going to get a look at the kingdom, let alone get in. Whoever becomes simple and elemental again, like this child, will rank high in God’s kingdom. What’s more, when you receive the childlike on my account, it’s the same as receiving me.’” –Matthew 18:1-4


About Clare Polencheck

Clare L. Polencheck is a yoga instructor who strives to live and write from a Christian-Yogic spiritual perspective, and is humbled to share tidbits of her lessons as a teacher of asana, a student of her students, and a pupil of Universe. Learning to go with God’s flow is her dharma code.


8 Responses to “Everyone wins, and then we “grow up.””

  1. Paul says:

    Wonderful Clare, Peggy and I just spoke of "everybody winning" as a child. Then we grow up…

  2. Love this, Clare.

    Posting to Elephant Yoga on Facebook and Twitter.

    Bob W.
    Yoga Editor

  3. YesuDas says:

    Lovely, Clare; thanks for this!

  4. Gaby says:

    This has really moved me to try a bit harder today to let go of rules and restrictions we learn as adults. I had another wonderful yoga teacher that also reminded us to view everything with the curiosity of a child, where everything is new and exciting, it hasn't been placed in these neat little boxes, or labeled as unimportant. A child doesn't see a leaf on the lawn and think oh great, now I need to rake the yard, they pick it up and say "this is the coolest leaf EVER" because at that moment it really is, and that sky is the prettiest, and this cake is the best ever, and that joke was the funniest. And it makes a lot of sense to approach our yoga practice as well as life with that absolute open mindedness and non comparing.
    This is your most amazing piece ever Clare!! …until tomorrow when you come out with more great writing 🙂

  5. yogiclarebear says:

    Gaby I love the leaf/rake! Thank you for sharing that.

    Our experiences help us grow but we can grow into stuckness with them…its all about balance.

    Thank you for your encouragement and kindness.

  6. yogiclarebear says:

    Thanks Bob, I appreciate it!

  7. Love that video, and the playfulness of the adults too.

    Whenever kids ask for a game in kids yoga class one of the younger kids will always ask for a game where no one has to get out. These are always the best games!

  8. yogiclarebear says:

    Oh please share a few game ideas!!